If not for the generous people of the Garden City, Danae Sweetapple would not have her guide dog Olive to help her today.
If not for the generous people of the Garden City, Danae Sweetapple would not have her guide dog Olive to help her today. Bev Lacey

Toowoomba generosity now official

IT'S official: Toowoomba people are among the most generous in Australia.

Garden City residents, still recovering from the January flooding disaster, are among the most regular donors to Guide Dogs Queensland, a survey has revealed.

Toowoomba residents donate on average $170 each.

The charity said Toowoomba residents with a taxable income of only $49,926 were the most regular donors.

Toowoomba woman Danae Sweetapple, who has had her current guide dog Olive for six weeks, said she was very grateful to the people in the city because it meant she could get to work safely every day and participate in everyday life.

“I think Toowoomba people are alert to the needs of the vision impaired,” she said.

Guide Dogs Queensland communication and marketing manager Donna Hurley said people were even leaving donations by bequests in their wills.

“A lot of our donors are people who live in humble circumstances. Perhaps they can't give now, so they leave us some money in their wills,” she said.

“It just goes to show their values and the need for the services.

“It's an important area for us and helps us plan for the future.”

Guide Dogs Queensland chief executive officer Chris Lane said the repeat donors tended to be lower to middle income families, retirees and pensioners not traditionally flush with cash.

“Most of our regular donors are not wealthy people; they are ordinary Queenslanders doing it tough, but they value our work and understand the need to give back to the community,” she said.

And this is not the first time Toowoomba has been recognised for its generosity, having been named the “most generous city” by World Vision chief executive Tim Costello in 2007.



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